Thursday, September 18, 2008

Newsletter week#17

Red Springs Family Farm
September 18, 2008, Week #17

This week:
Lettuce Kale Tomatoes Eggplants
Peppers – all shapes and sizes Patty Pan Squash
Tomatillos Carrots & Beets Arugula
Parsley Basil Celery Red Onion
Potatoes Apples

By next Thursday, Autumn will have officially arrived. Wow.
If you ever find that we have neglected to give you something in your basket, please let us know. We’ll be happy to correct our error – either by leaving the veggies at the store for you to pick up the next day, or by bringing you a replacement the following week.

Our friends at Bugtussle Farm and Long Hungry Creek Farm helped fill out the baskets this week. We’re happy to live where there are several small organic farms with friendly folks to share and support each other. Wouldn’t it be great if there were even more?

You’ve got a BIG handful of parsley this week. It needed picking. Medicinally, parsley is not recommended for pregnant and nursing mamas. Don’t hesitate to feed it to chickens if you can’t eat it now. For those of you looking for something to do with this super-green, try this:
Tabouli (adapted from From the Tables of Lebanon)

½ cup bulgur, washed and drained ¾ cup fresh lemon juice
Combine ½ cup boiling water with the bulgur in a small bowl; cover and let sit for 15 minutes. Squeeze water out. Pour lemon juice over the bulgur and let stand at room temp for 5 minutes.

BIG bunch of parsley, cleaned, washed, and finely chopped (food processor helps!)
4 medium tomatoes, finely chopped 1 bunch of scallions, chopped
1 cup finely chopped mint (I’ve used ¼ c. dried) 1 small red onion
¾ cup extra virgin olive oil 1 Tbsp. salt 1 tsp. allspice
Mix all vegetables and add to the bulgur. Add the olive oil, salt, and allspice, and mix thoroughly with the vegetables. Serve in lettuce leaves or with pita bread and other such yummies.

Arugula has arrived! If you don’t know it by sight, it’s the dark, round-lobed green in the salad bag. The flavor is unmistakable – pungent, spicy, clean – there’s really not much like it! If the flavor is abit too sharp for you raw, then chop it up and throwing it on top of a pizza, just for the last five minutes in the oven. It also melts well into lasagna layers.

Try sautéing the tomatillos and patty pan squashes together. Chop a fresh tomato and sprinkle basil over the top. Remember to caramelize the onion before adding the tomatillos and squash.

The little tiny herb in your bag is thyme. It’s great in beans and stews, and would be tasty and aromatic roasted with the carrots, beets, and potatoes.

Oh yes, potatoes. They won’t be coming every week, but now and then, for sure. Small baskets have 3 lbs, larger 6 lbs. One pound of potatoes yields 2 cups mashed potatoes or French fries, or nearly 3 cups sliced or diced. If you want to stock up and store some for the winter, we will be making them available for bulk sale a little later. There are still apples for sale, too, 50 cents per pound, for storing or making applesauce. It’s a great year for apples!

Baked Eggplant “Lasagna” (from Angelic Organics Kitchen)

Olive Oil for greasing pans and coating eggplant and peppers
1 large eggplant, in ½ inch slices salt
1 bell pepper, in ¼ inch rings 1 cup ricotta cheese
3 large egg whites, lightly beaten ¾ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp. finely chopped basil 2 Tbsp. finely chopped parsley
Pinch cayenne pepper 1 cup tomato sauce, divided
4 ounces mozzarella cheese, grated 1/3 cup pitted, finely sliced black olives

1. Preheat oven to 400. grease 8-9 inch square baking dish.
2. Arrange eggplant slices on the a baking sheet, season with salt, and brush tops with olive oil. Bake until eggplant is soft and golden (20 min). Transfer to a plate and set aside.
3. Reduce oven temp to 350.
4. Toss the peppers with a few dashes of olive oil in a medium bowl. Spread on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes.
5. In a large bowl, mix ricotta cheese, egg white, ½ cup parmesan, basil parsley, cayenne, (add some chopped arugula here!) and a generous dash of salt until well combined.
6. Arrange half the eggplant slices in the baking dish. Spread the ricotta mixture evenly over the slices. Pour half the tomato sauce evenly on top. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Arrange the pepper and olives on top of the mozzarella. Top with the remaining tomato sauce. Add the remaining eggplant slices and sprinkle with the remaining parmesan cheese. Bake until all layers are heated through and the cheese is melted (45 minutes).

We don’t cook like this much at home, but this recipe sure sounds great to me:

Earth Apple Torte (from Vegetarian Times)
1 large baking potato, or 1 cup mashed 1 ½ cups sugar or substitute
1 ½ cups finely ground pecans 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp. ground cloves 4 large eggs
1/3 cup seedless raspberry preserves ½ cup fresh raspberries (opt)

1. Preheat oven to 375F. Butter and flour 8 ½ inch springform, or 9 inch round cake pan.
2. Peel baked potato while still hot, and put into food processor. Add 1 cup sugar, pecans, cinnamon, and cloves, and process 30 seconds, until uniform in color. Scrape into a bowl.
3. Separate 3 eggs, reserving whites. Add three yolks and remaining whole egg to potato mixture and beat until smooth.
4. Place whites in a separate bowl. Beat until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining ½ cup sugar, beating until glossy peaks form, about 4 minutes. Do not overbeat.
5. Using spatula, fold 1/3 of egg whites into potato mixture until lightened. Fold in remaining whites until non white streaks remain. Pour batter into prepared pan, and place on baking sheet.
6. Bake 55-60 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on wire rack. Spread raspberry preserves on top. Garnish with fresh raspberries and mint, if desired.

Thank you all for sharing the harvest this week.

Hope to see you next week again!
Your gardeners, Paul, Coree, and Lulah Entwistle

“The sun is still high in the sky, giving warmth and glee.
Fruit and flowers all colorful, glow with good cheer.
So come and dance with me, for Autumn’s here.” – Elsa Beskow’s Autumn Song

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